How To Depot Your Lipsticks

10.22.2014

how to condense your lipstick stash, how to depot lipstick, diy lipstick palette, melting lipstick tutorial, makeup kit organization
I'll admit it: I'm a lipstick hoarder. I don't exactly remember the moment where I realized that I prefer to emphasize my lips over my eyes, but I do know that was the moment my lipstick collection surpassed my eyeshadow collection two to one. I always justified my expensive lipstick habit by saying I'm a makeup artist and I need the lipstick for my kit, but let's be real: it's alllll for me. All joking aside, I have my personal stash of lipsticks, and then my lipsticks specifically for my kit. For my kit lipsticks, it just got to be too messy and confusing to have a bunch of loose lipsticks laying around in my Zuca bag, so I decided it was time to condense and consolidate my kit lipsticks. This is also super helpful if you have a ton of lipsticks and want to be a bit better organized. So here is what you need:

AILA Cosmetics Nail Polish Review and Swatches

10.20.2014

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AILA Cosmetics is a recently launched nail polish line exclusively at BeauTeaBar.com, and you guys... They are GREAT. These polishes are 5-free, which means they are free from formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, toluene, DBT, and camphor. More recently, they launched their "Better Than Gel" top coat which is a gel-like top coat without the toxic chemicals in most gel polishes and doesn't require a UV light to set. And thank the looooord for this top coat, because I don't want to get wrinkly hands just for being vain!

When I went to buy some AILA polishes, I noticed that I couldn't find any swatches of them online! As a consumer, I always like looking at swatches online before buying so I can see my beauty purchase will be worth it or not. Since I couldn't find any swatches, I basically purchased blindly, but it totally worked out. I'm in love with my polishes! But as a courtesy to consumers everywhere (how many times can I say "consumer" in one paragraph?), I figured I would swatch and review the four shades I purchased from BeauTeaBar, and review the Better Than Gel top coat.
AILA Ms. Martin nail polish swatch and review, aila my 2 jeffs nail lacquer swatch and review, aila mister pookies review and swatch, aila ginger nail polish review and swatch
  • Ms. Martin is a pale peach-pink that can be applied super sheer (one coat), a sheerish-opaque (two coats), or semi-opaque (three coats). I prefer three coats, personally. This color is gorgeous! It's the perfect everyday nude.
  • My 2 Jeffs is a deep and rich navy blue with a purple metallic twist in it, and is one of the new fall shades from AILA. Okay, you guys. This is my go-to color at the moment. It's always on my nails! It's sooo gorgeous, and in two coats you have the perfect, opaque fall manicure.
  • Mister Pookies is a steel gray with purple undertones. This is another great fall shade, and is perfectly opaque in two coats.
  • Ginger is a vibrant pink-coral that is incredibly bright! It is perfectly opaque in two coats, and is the quintessential summer manicure color. Although I'll totally be rocking this year-round.
  • Better Than Gel Top Coat (not pictured)- This stuff is MAGICAL. I've been testing it out the past couple of weeks, and this top coat makes my manicure last for a full week. Insane! I should note it is NOT a fast-drying top coat, so you will need to be cautious after painting your nails with it for the first hour or two after application. But other than that, it's perfection in a bottle. And it makes my nails super glossy!
AILA polishes retail for $17.00 each and are available at BeauTeaBar.com. Have you tried anything from AILA yet?


Nothing to disclose. Products mentioned purchased by me.

Weekend Wrap Up // No. 34

10.19.2014

Happy Sunday, ya'll! The weather is changing here in Florida which can only mean: ALLERGY SEASON. While I do welcome the amazing weather that comes with fall, I do detest the allergies that come along with it. But that doesn't mean I'm going to stay home all day to wallow in self-pity! Quite the opposite, actually- I made my way to Disney World to hit up the Food and Wine Festival to eat and drink myself to a better "me". So while I'm in a perennial state of sneezing and self-medicating, here's what you've missed on the blogosphere!

// The Latest on Brikasia //

// The List //

  • Did you miss out on ordering the LORAC Mega Pro Palette? Have no fear, enter this giveaway for a chance to win it! (Daydreaming Beauty)
  • Check out this gorgeous makeup look with Eugenia's must-have eyeshadow palette! (Geniabeme)
  • This DIY Pumpkin Face Mask for acne-prone skin looks AWESOME. (Slashed Beauty)
  • This is the perfect bridal makeup look! (The Beauty Milk)
  • This manicure is really giving me life right now. (Love, Varnish)
  • Oh, and here's another awesome manicure. I wish I was actually good at nails! (A Little Polish)

// Jamming Out //

This week's jam isn't new by any means, but it's new to my earholes and I've got this song on REPEAT. It's just so goooood. "Animal" by Miike Snow. Get on it!


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NovaWhite Teeth Whitening System Review

10.17.2014

novawhite go kits, novawhite teeth whitening review, best teeth whitening systems, how to whiten teeth at home
NovaWhite GO Kit
I've never quite felt the need to get my teeth whitened in my 22 years of existence because I've always had relatively white teeth. Once I entered college, I began drinking lots of coffees and teas, and more recently, lots of red wine. Basically anything that can stain your teeth found its way to my teeth. I had been wanting to get my teeth whitened professionally, until my dentist told me it was $500 to do it in-office. NO THANKS! Needless to say, I was thrilled when NovaWhite reached out to me to see if I wanted to try their teeth whitening system. Yes, please!
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NovaWhite SuperNova Kit
NovaWhite’s SuperNova and NovaWhite Go Kits come complete with all whitening necessities; generic or customized whitening trays, whitening gel solution, lip balm, breath spray, washcloth, and travel bag. Go Kits retail for $54.00 and SuperNova Kits retail for $180.00. All items are available for purchase at NovaWhite.com.

I received the NovaWhite GO Kit, which includes two boil-and-bite trays and three syringes of the whitening gel (seen in the header photo). The boil-and-bite trays are pretty cool, and perhaps I'm just easy to please, but I'm impressed that this technology (would this be considered technology? I don't know!) is easily accessible through NovaWhite. Basically, you boil a pot of water and dip the tray in for five seconds. When you take the tray out of the water, you insert it in your mouth and make an impression of your teeth (be sure to not burn yourself with boiling water!). It's really cool and makes the teeth whitening process a breeze. To actually whiten your teeth, you apply a small amount of the gel into the tray (here's how they show you do it) and insert the trays in your mouth for 1-3 hours. And that's it! It really is that simple.

I had a fairly good experience with the NovaWhite system, especially considering I had never done anything of the sort before. For about the first week, I did experience some sensitivity and didn't notice any improvement in the whiteness of my teeth. I left the trays in my mouth for an hour, so I decided to increase the amount of time the trays spent in my mouth. After leaving the trays in my mouth for two hours, I began noticing significant improvement in the whiteness of my teeth. The whitening gel has a slight minty taste to it, which was definitely pleasant. Oh, and pro tip: try not to sneeze with the trays in your mouth, because it kiiiinda becomes a mess. Trust me on that one.
Slight difference in whiteness, but definitely noticeable!
Even my mom has made remarks about how my smile is noticeably whiter. That's always a good sign! And she didn't even know I was trialing a teeth whitening system. Win! So overall, I am very pleased with NovaWhite and for the price of $54, you just can't beat it.

And because the people over at NovaWhite are so extremely awesome, you can try this system out for 15% off! Use code brikasia15 to receive 15% off your NovaWhite order! What have been your experiences with teeth whitening?

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Disclosure: The products featured in this post were sent by NovaWhite. However, all opinions are my own.

My Skincare Routine

10.15.2014

green beauty, green beauty skincare routine, may lindstrom the clean dirt, la bella figura bio active purifying mask, kypris clearing serum, kiehls creamy eye treatement, embryolisse lait creme concentre, indie lee squalane facial oil, sw basics of brooklyn cleanser
I don't remember who they were interviewing, but I remember reading an Into the Gloss interview with some famous person who was very adamant about not washing your face- just splash some water on your face and you're good, is what I recall them saying. Uh, homie no. I ~guess~ that works if you have naturally great skin, but if you have a smorgasbord of skin problems... Homie no. That being said, I don't think I've ever fully covered my full skincare routine on here, so I figured, why not? I'm always raving on like a lunatic about natural skincare, so why not get into specifics?
green beauty, green beauty skincare routine, may lindstrom the clean dirt, la bella figura bio active purifying mask, kypris clearing serum, kiehls creamy eye treatement, embryolisse lait creme concentre, indie lee squalane facial oil, sw basics of brooklyn cleanser
So, I guess I do agree ~to a certain extent~ with random famous person from ITG in the opening paragraph. I definitely don't think a person should overcleanse their face by washing it strenuously twice a day, which is why I keep my morning skincare routine fairly simple. I start off with the SW Basics of Brooklyn Cleanser, and apply it with a cotton round over my face. Then I splash my face with water (just like the skincare commercials on TV!), dry my face, and then apply the Kypris Clearing Serum over any problem areas. After that soaks in, I use my ol' faithful Embryolisse Lait-Creme Concentre and then I'm ready to do my makeup! Super simple and super quick to do, which is great when I wake up late and am rushing out the door.
green beauty, green beauty skincare routine, may lindstrom the clean dirt, la bella figura bio active purifying mask, kypris clearing serum, kiehls creamy eye treatement, embryolisse lait creme concentre, indie lee squalane facial oil, sw basics of brooklyn cleanser
My evening skincare routine is a wee bit more involved and time-consuming, which is totes okay by me since this is how I unwind. I start off with applying the May Lindstrom The Clean Dirt to my face, and I let it sit on my face for a few minutes. I then wash it off, and apply the Kypris Clearing Serum over any problem area. Then I apply the Embryolisse Lait-Creme Concentre all over my face, and then add the Kiehl's Creamy Eye Treatment underneath my eyes. To finish everything off, I pat some Indie Lee Squalane Facial Oil over my face to sort of "seal in" the products beforehand. It's a weird method, I know, but I'm convinced it works.

Also, once a week in lieu of applying The Clean Dirt to my face, I'll use the La Bella Figura Bio Active Purifying Mask and let it sit on my face as I watch Netflix for about 45 minutes or so. I also sometimes use this in the mornings as a spot treatment. It's pretty much magical. In fact, as I sit here typing this, I have it on my chin. It looks like I have a weird beard, but whatever it takes to get to clear skin!

And that's it! Pretty simple stuff, and I rarely change my routine because I don't like making it a habit to piss my skin off, ya know? So now that I've shared my skincare routine, what's yours?


Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.

How To Shop on Instagram

10.13.2014

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If you're as Instagram-addicted as I am, then you've probably noticed the surging popularity of Instagram boutiques. If you're not familiar, you are certainly not along! Because Instagram is such a visual medium of social media, a lot of people are turning to Instagram to sell old clothes and vintage finds and utilizing popular hashtags, such as #instaboutique and #shopmycloset. While you can't purchase items directly off of Instagram like you would on a traditional e-commerce site, typically vendors have you leave your e-mail on the photo of the item you want so they can send you a secure PayPal invoice.

So while that seems pretty straightforward, some people are still hesitant to buy things via Instagram. And I don't blame you! There are a lot of sketchballs on Instagram (I'm looking at you, follow for a follow accounts). And since launching my own Instagram shop with my friend Lauren, I figured I would write a lil' somethin' somethin' to give you the 4-1-1 on shopping on Instagram. And I'm even including some of my favorite Instagram shops! Now get your fingertips and smart phones ready... It's time to shop.

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  • Here is a great tip from Lauren: "Don't be afraid to ask for try-on photos or details about an item's condition, life it comes from a non-smoking home or not." Nothing like buying an item in mint condition, but having it reek of cigarette smoke. No thanks!
  • I've found that most Instashops are pretty trustworthy, but it is still important to be cautious. Read through the shop's policies and check out the quality of photos. Check out the people who comment on a shop's pictures. For me, it's important for a shop to have good quality photos. I don't want to see clothes in yellow lighting from the basement!
  • Don't be afraid of leaving your e-mail for a PayPal invoice. You don't need Paypal for a PayPal invoice, either. PayPal is truly the safest way to purchase an item from somewhere without giving them your credit card info. 
  • Once you have a list of a trusted shops, browse through the shops they're following to find more trustworthy shops. Instagram has a great online boutique community, and everyone is very supportive of each other. This is a great way to find new boutiques.
  • You can also search through popular hashtags, such as #instashop, #instaboutique, #instacloset, and #shopmycloset to find new items for purchase. 
  • Your gut feeling is typically always correct. If you're getting weird vibes from a boutique, DON'T DO IT. It's not worth it.
And, as promised, here are some of me & Lauren's favorite Instagram shops!
So now I gotta ask... would you buy something from Instagram? If you have, what have your experiences been like? Any Instagram boutiques you love? Do share in the comments!





Weekend Wrap Up // No. 33

10.12.2014

Happy Sunday! I hope you've all had a great week and an even better weekend. Last Sunday I worked on an amazing photo shoot of a husband + wife, and was the wife not a stunning model?! Homegirl BROUGHT IT. She had the greatest cheekbones ever. For all of you with amazing bone structure and cheekbones: I am forever envious of you. This round face o'mine WISHES it looked naturally sculpted! Oh well. We always want what we don't have, amiright? Alas, here's what you've missed this week!

// The Latest on Brikasia //

// The List //

  • Okay, this is totally unrelated to beauty but this is SO fascinating. Here's what it's like to fly the $23,000 Singapore Airlines Suites Class. (Medium.com)
  • Here are some great natural & nontoxic makeup tips for glowing skin. (Beauty by Britanie)
  • Here's a foolproof guide to decoding beauty ingredient labels. (Byrdie)
  • This manicure is making me crave summer again! (Let Them Have Polish!)

// Jamming Out //

This weekend I've been incredibly productive (which is SO rare for me nowadays), and the only thing I've been playing to keep me in the groove is the xx. Here's one of my favorites from their first album, Islands.

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New Guest Post on BeauTeaBar

10.10.2014

Happy Friday everyone! It's a gorgeous day out today in sunny Florida, so before you get to your day, why don't you head over to BeauTeaBar's blog for a super special makeup tutorial I did on Marissa for her rehearsal dinner? I'm using La Bella Figura's newest makeup line, and as you can see, these products are incredibly versatile. So instead of me rambling on and on about how gorgeous Marissa is and how great the La Bella Figura products are, just head over to BTB's blog for the full tutorial!


Things That Have Inspired Me Lately // Vol. 001

10.08.2014

moroccan tiles, fall colors, navy blue tile, fall flowers, karlie kloss vogue
image source (top left, clockwise): 1, 2, 3, 4

As you could probably tell by previous posts, I've been feeling less than inspired lately, and let's be real- that is a TERRIBLE feeling, especially when your job is to be as creative as possible. When I asked for suggestions as to what to do when I'm feeling uninspired, a lot of you said to turn to Pinterest. The problem for me was that I was following way too many people on Pinterest who pinned content that, quite frankly, did not inspire me. So with a glass of Pinot Grigio in hand, I spent several hours over the weekend cleaning out my Pinterest and trying my hardest to feel inspired.

And you know what? It totally worked. Now when I peruse through Pinterest, I feel inspired and creative again. Is this how Beyonce feels on a regular basis? Does Beyonce use Pinterest? These are the questions running through my head right now. Forgive me, it's been so long since I've dropped a Bey reference in my blog! Alas, I'm kind of going crazy over on Pinterest, and have really been inspired by these darker and more moody color palettes (like these gorgeous deep navys, forest greens, cranberry reds, mustard yellows), probably because of the season we're in. It's also been super overcast in Florida lately, so besides the fact that I'm probably depressed because of the lack of Vitamin D, I've also been super into darker colors. And also, TILE. I'm so into the tile work in Morocco and parts of Spain. So intricate and SO pretty.

What's been inspiring you lately?

Weekend Wrap Up // No. 32

10.05.2014

Happy Sunday! Today we are fiiiinally getting our first cold front of the season, which means 78 degree weather for us! It'll be a refreshing break from the humid 90 degree weather we've been dealing with in Florida for what seems like an eternity. So now that it's 78 degrees out, that totally means I can bust out my favorite boots, right? I'll look for any excuse to wear long pants and boots! Anyway, this weekend I've been working my little booty off, doing bridal trials and photo shoots. Exhausting but totally rewarding! I also got my hands on an AMAZING new lipstick (seen above). I have the link for you down below on "The List"! Speaking of, let's get straight to it! Here's what you've missed...

// The Latest on Brikasia //

// The List //

  • The lipstick I'm wearing in the header photo is called "Survivor" by Nudus Australia. Amaaaazing lipstick with crazy pigmentation and best of all? No toxic ingredients. Win! (BeauTeaBar)
  • I really, really, really want to make these bracelets. Time to head to the craft store! (A Beautiful Mess)
  • I really want to buy these face charts. It looks like so much fun to work on! (Phyrra)
  • Two of my favorite things in one video: Man Repeller's Leandra Medine interviewing my girl crushes, Haim. (Man Repeller)
  • Such a gorgeous everyday look! Loving that cream blush. (The Beauty Milk)

// Jamming Out //

I've been on an Alt-J kick lately, which couldn't be more perfect since they've recently dropped their sophomore album. Here's my favorite from the album: Hunger of the Pine.
 
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